With Super Bowl XLVIII now complete, the NFL and all its fans are thoroughly aware as to whom the team to beat is. Unfortunately for the New York Giants, that team is a great one that happens to reside in the NFC. In other words, the Seattle Seahawks are the new standard and appear to be the most complete team in the NFL.
If the Giants wish to get back to being the best, they will undoubtedly have to go through the Seahawks to get to the Super Bowl. There’s little doubt that general manager Jerry Reese and head coach Tom Coughlin will be considering the Seahawks when they reassemble the fractures Giants during this offseason — a team that handed the Giants their second shut out of the year.
On the defensive side of the field, the Giants should be able to compete if they can generate a pass rush. Unfortunately, against the Seahawks, that won’t be enough as Russell Wilson has shown an uncanny ability to not only escape from pressure with great speed, but also the intellect to keep his head up and either find the open receiver or an open lane to run through. Such a combo makes the Seahawks a nightmare to stop on third downs.
Acquiring an additional cornerback to compliment Prince Amukamara could make life a little easier, but the Giants still need help in one other area to shut down Wilson and that is at the linebacker position. Adding another speedy and aggressive linebacker either via free agency or the draft could help as well in terms of shadowing and blitzing Wilson. In terms of Marshawn Lynch, despite living up to his nickname, he is a beast that can be tamed and the Giants have a stout enough defensive line to do so. However, the potential departure of Linval Joseph could drastically hinder the defensive line’s production. On the defensive side of the field, look for the Giants to try to address their needs at linebacker and cornerback.
On the offensive side of the ball, the most glaring weakness is the offensive line. Without proper protection, quarterback Eli Manning will have many more games like his meeting with the Seahawks earlier this season where he turned the football over four times. Better production from the offensive line also can help prolong drives and keep the defense rested.
However, much like on defensive, the Giants have further holes to address. To keep the Seahawks offense on the sidelines the Giants will need to be able to run the football. A healthy David Wilson and Andre Brown conglomerated with a productive offensive line could be good enough, but there is no guarantee that either can stay healthy enough to shoulder the load. Another running back may be in the plans for the Giants as rookies like Eddie Lacy and LeVeon Bell have shown that rookie running backs can come in and contribute immediately at a high level.
The Giants' receiving corps is skilled enough to compete with the Seattle secondary, but that is assuming Hakim Nicks stays. Even if he does, a big tight end target over the middle of the field could be exactly what the Giants need to create mismatches similar to those Vernon Davis posed against the Seahawks. If Nicks leaves, wide receiver becomes an immediate need despite the emerging Rueben Randle. Unfortunately, none of these skill positions will matter if the Giants cannot protect Manning, after such a horrendous season the Giants will surely address their needs in the trenches as that is where Super Bowl’s are won.
Don’t be surprised if Jerry Reese has one of his stronger drafts either. Seahawks general manager, John Schneider, who was seen shirtless, sporting a WWE Championship belt after the Super Bowl is also the standard for general managers. Schneider and head coach Pete Carroll were able were able to find contributors and super stars beyond the first and second rounds of their drafts. Something the Giants have struggled with since selecting the likes of Ahmad Bradshaw and Kevin Boss.
Regardless of what the Giants do, they most likely will consider resolving their own weaknesses first. Matching up with the Seahawks may be an after thought, but considering that they are the reigning NFC and Super Bowl Champions, in addition to the fact that they shut out the Giants in the regular season, the Giants certainly will be looking forward to another matchup with the Seahawks.
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Just because the Super Bowl left NY/NJ it doesn't mean the NFL action is over. Come see the Gridiron Glory: The Best of the Pro Football Hall of Fame at Liberty Science Center see jerseys worn by legends, make the tough call under the hood, try on equipment and get immersed into football like never before.David Wilson, Eddie Lacy, Eli Manning, Football, Jerry Reese, Linval Joseph, New York, New York Giants, NFL, Pete Carroll, Prince Amukamara, Rueben Randle, Seattle, Seattle Seahawks, Tom Coughlin
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